Thursday, August 2, 2012

Five Year Plans (part 3 of 3)

Today is my final update on five year plans.  If you have not seen the previous posts they are HERE and HERE.  Taking the time to outline the next five years of your life can help you make necessary changes and set incremental goals, but it can also help you another way.

Today's thought:  Five Year Plans allow you to prepare to change the game.

I am a guitarist (more a mechanic than a musician) and one thing I have learned is that the ear tires of a progression of music after three repetitions.  So while you will hear the same riff twice in a row, the third time through it will change, or you will turn it off.  This principle is repeated in the life of organizations.  Larry Bird, all star basketball player, coach, and manager, said that the effective life of a coach is three years; after that the players tune the coach out.  This is true unless you change the game.  Reinvention or game changing is an important part of the motivation of an organization and for you as the leader.  Failure to change leaves the leader in a rut, and guess what?  The organization will be content to stay right there.  They would rather drift into apathy then do the work of change, reinvention, rebirth.  That is why a leader needs a five year plan! In addition to laying out the change you will lead over the next three years and setting goals to move you toward the preferred future, you will also be mindful of the reinvention that will be formulated in year-three. It will have its starting expression in year-four and fruition in year-five.

--Ben

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